Painting the Portrait in Monochrome | Mark Hill | Skillshare

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Painting the Portrait in Monochrome

teacher avatar Mark Hill, Fine Artist

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Introduction to oil


    • 2.



    • 3.

      The Initial Drawing


    • 4.

      Beginning transfer


    • 5.

      Inking the transfer


    • 6.

      Staining your canvas


    • 7.

      Beginning first pass


    • 8.

      Continuing the first pass


    • 9.

      Establishing the eye and nose


    • 10.

      Establishing mouth and forehead


    • 11.

      Continuing the forehead


    • 12.

      Painting the eye


    • 13.

      Adding the Chin & hair


    • 14.

      Beginning the neck


    • 15.

      Adding the background


    • 16.

      Beginning the second pass


    • 17.

      Continuing the second pass


    • 18.

      Finishing the eye


    • 19.

      Finishing the nose


    • 20.

      Finishing the forehead and cheek


    • 21.

      Finishing the second eye


    • 22.

      Finishing the mouth


    • 23.

      Finishing the chin


    • 24.

      Finishing the hair


    • 25.

      The final touches


    • 26.

      Final thoughts


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About This Class

This class is about painting the portrait in monochrome oil paint. I will walk you through a completed portrait in a very procedural process started with a completed drawing, how to transfer your image to a canvas, and how to approach the portrait in different stages of oil painting from initial stain, to first and proceeding layers. 

This is a great way to get started with oil painting the portrait in an easy step-by-step process. Great for those looking to get started painting with a simple palette and minimal materials. 

Meet Your Teacher

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Mark Hill

Fine Artist


I'm a traditionally trained artist currently residing in New York City. I specialize in traditional mediums from graphite and charcoal to oil painting. I've studied in several places in Southern California, and recently finished my studies in New York at the Grand Central Atelier. I've taught everything from drawing to painting for several years, both publicly and privately. Looking to share what I know and help others on Skillshare!

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Level: Intermediate

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1. Introduction to oil: Hey everyone. So in this class, we'll be going over painting the portrait and monochromatic oils. Now, I originally wanted to do this class for those of you who might already have some drawing experience. And we're maybe thinking about going into oil painting or any other kind of painting for that matter. So I wanted to make this in a very easy to follow step-by-step approach so that it hopefully makes that learning process a little bit easier for you, so that you can take some of those drawing skills and be able to immediately apply them to oil painting. Now as we begin the class, I will start with a pre-prepared drawing, which I will discuss how to transfer to a canvas. Now this step is totally optional, but it is one I encourage you to do as it makes the process overall a little bit easier to follow. From there, I'll discuss staining your surface and beginning the initial layers as we prepare our painting. Now, I'm choosing to go in a sort of a longer format portrait for this particular class. But a lot of the principles that I discussed can be applied to an Alla prima painting that if you wanted to just do a shorter, almost oil sketch in monochrome, you could follow this approach as well. As we develop the painting. I'll discuss how I like to build up various layers, as well as ultimately refining individual features and tying everything together. Again, my approach for this class was really to walk you through step-by-step, the various stages of building the portrait towards a Finnish. And while it's not necessary to follow along to get a good result, if you're just starting out with painting and you're not quite sure about the various steps that are involved to go from a start to a finish. I want to just guide you along through the process and you can kind of decide what makes sense to you and what feels like a good fit for the way that you like to work. Overall, I want to just keep it as simple as I possibly can so that if you're just starting out with painting, I'm hoping that this is a very good entry-level way for you to just kind of take the procedure and see it unfold step-by-step so that you can feel more confident as you approach the portrait and just get some painting experience under your belt. Thank you for watching. 2. Materials : All right, so before we get started, I just wanted to talk a little bit about materials and what I'll be using for the demonstration. But I also want to just talk about maybe some options that you might consider depending on the look that you're going for in your painting. Now obviously because we're doing a monochromatic painting, you want to just keep it fairly limited. And so that way you don't have to make too many choices and we can just focus on the painting part. But nonetheless, I will kinda talk about some different options that you might find appealing. So primarily, obviously we're going to have a white pigment of some kind and then a darker pigment of some kind to do monochrome. But I'll be using flake white for my demonstration. And really the only difference is a flake white is a lead-based pigment, very similar to whatever you want to call it, like criminals, white flake, white, lead white, all pretty much the same thing. Now if you don't feel comfortable working with a lead-based pigment, that's totally fine and probably normal. So you can always opt to use titanium white as a default. And really the only difference other than the pigments themselves is that the, in a nutshell, the tinting strength of a lead-based pigment isn't going to be nearly as strong as titanium white. So titanium is a very opaque white pigment that can really drastically changed colors pretty quickly if you use a lot of it in your mixtures. So, but otherwise, that would really be the only choice you would have to make for those. Now, in terms of our dark pigment, here's where I'll talk about a couple of different options. Now, I'm going to be using raw umber for my dark pigment. And the reason for that is I just like the way it looks. It's kind of like it's not too warm, but it's not too cold. So there's like a nice neutral feeling to the mixture. In what ends up happening is, is that they compare it to say, something like a burnt umber. Burnt umber has a lot of red in it, so you kind of get a warmer sort of mixture as you're painting and you may like that. Think of, you know, almost like that sepia tone kinda look which in and of itself is a nice, It's a nice aesthetic. So now the only problem with these two pigments is that as we add white to the mixtures, they start to get a lot duller pretty quick and they're not actually super, super dark out of the tube. I mean, they're fairly dark and n terms of a value scale. But if we are looking for a full value range, It's hard to achieve that with just these pigments alone. So that's where having some ivory black on your palate can be really beneficial just to get those really dark values that might be in shadows or an accent values in your painting. So I'll always have a little bit of ivory black on my palette. Just for those really dark mixtures where, you know, if I can't get quite the value that I'm looking for out of the tube from raw umber. And I would say especially for burnt umber itself, it's since it's a bit warmer, you would almost want to have this on your palette anyway, because as you're mixing with it, well, it can get dark. It's not super, super dark if you need those really deep values. Now the only other addition that I have on here is a Van Dyke brown. And very similar to raw umber is that with the Van Dyke brown and the white, it makes a beautiful neutral color. It's not quite as warm as even the raw umber. So there's a slight difference, but I actually prefer if I were to just say paint with, let's say if I did white or black or white and Van Dyke brown, the white and ivory black mixture, if you paint monochrome, it's actually a very cold mixture. And I don't really find it that appealing. To be honest. You can certainly try it, but it's very I don't know. It's hard to it's hard to describe, I guess in words is that the white and black, it just lends itself to a very cold painting. And so as an alternative, if you just wanted to stick to two pigments, I might recommend the Van Dyke brown for you because it just gets it a little bit more neutral. So it's going to be cooler and more neutral than either the raw umber or the burnt umber. But nonetheless, this is just another option. So if you just want to let say, get two pigments and not even worry about the ivory black. You could totally do a Van Dyke brown and a white, and that would be enough of a range, but with ivory, ivory black being such a common color, It's worth just having it always on hand. So it's something you're going to use anyway. Outside of that, that's pretty much it in terms of pigments. You don't really need anything else for these. Now, outside of that, the only other thing that we'll have is either some solvents and like maybe a medium. Now. I wouldn't use any sort of medium throughout the painting. It's just going to be a standard linseed oil so you don't really need anything super fancy. And I would say with any sort of medium, it's something that you'll use sparingly. We primarily want to just focus with working with the paint. And a lot of the times the pigments themselves have enough oil in them that you don't really need additional medium. So now if you're painting super thick or anything like that, you can always just pile on paint, but I generally paint fairly thin to, you know, kind of a medium body when I'm working. So you don't I don't really need additional medium, but I do if maybe some of these colors I know or I've had for a while and if they're a little stiff out of the tube, I'll add a little bit of linseed just to get the colors flowing a little bit easier. Outside of that, you want some sort of solvent or brush cleaner just so that you can clean your brushes in between mixing colors or anything like that. So this is just like a natural brush cleaner that I like in it for me being in a very small space and I don't have the best sort of painting situation. I like using this because it's a little bit more natural than say, turpentine. But any sort of odorless mineral spirits will suffice just to kinda clean your brushes. So I never use a solvent to paint with or anything like that. It's purely just for cleaning my brushes. Now, again, so I know a lot of times I would have students in the past where they were cutting their paint with turpentine to thin it out and then paint with that. Now, I don't necessarily agree with that and I won't go into the into the why as much. But if you're going to be thinning your pain, you want to use a medium of some kind. The solvent is really just a cleaning agent. So outside of that, I'll talk a little bit about brushes, but we want to keep this again, pretty simple and straightforward, so it's easier for us to work. So in terms of brushes, I kinda keep things fairly simple and because I'm working fairly small, most of the time, I'll just stick to smaller brushes. And if I was working on a larger canvas or anything like that, then I would scale my brushes up so that, you know, I'm kind of, the larger you work, the larger your brushes want to be in. Most of the time I'm working. And 11 by 14, 12 by 16 kind of sizes may be 16 by 20 because I'm not working fairly large if I do a portrait or anything like that. So most of the time my brushes are going to be on the smaller side and it's just easier for me to work. And these are predominantly rounds, but I'll use some Hilbert's as well. If you're just starting out with oil painting by a handful of sizes of maybe the different around a flat, a filbert. Just so that you can kind of get familiar with how those brushes work. I just find myself, in terms of how I like to paint these days, I'm finding myself gravitating towards rounds and that's just more of a personal preference. Outside of that, I just, I use very inexpensive brushes. I don't use super expensive materials in terms of like brushes or anything like that. I'll use nicer paint a lot of the times, but brushes get can get damaged fairly easily just with scrubbing and just painting and cleaning with solvents and stuff like that. So I just have a tendency to stick to lesser expensive brushes. So honestly that's really about it. Just keep a couple of different, you know, have some larger sizes, just in case have some smaller sizes and some medium, whatever. But just don't, You don't need a whole sort of bushel of brushes to get going. You can honestly do a painting with a handful of brushes just to get you started. Outside of that, you're going to something that you're always going to be sort of buying. At some point as you paint more, you know, you just kind of naturally accumulate brushes as you go. But if you're just starting out, keep it really simple for yourself and just get a handful of sizes to work with and don't get anything super, super small. Kind of stick to something. And I would say that the scale, the way the brushes are numbered, every brand kinda does something a little different. So a size 8 brush in one brand and depending on the kind of brush it is, whether if it's around or a filbert or a flat, the numbers kind of are different for every brand, so it doesn't really mean anything. I honestly just look at the at the shape and the amount of hair that's in the middle of the brush, and that's really about it. So keep it simple for now. And because we're just doing portraits, we don't really need super huge brushes or anything like that. And the only time you would want to have a lot of larger brushes on hand as if you were working very large, but I suspect most of you will be working in an average size canvas, you know, like I said earlier, like 11 by 14, 12 by 16 or so. That's a nice, decent size for like a portrait study that we'll be doing in this class. 3. The Initial Drawing: So before we get started with any painting, I wanted to just discuss my approach and my process in how we'll be doing in this project. Now, there's a couple of ways that you can decide to do this depending on what you feel comfortable with and what kind of approach you might prefer. Now, obviously, I have a completed drawing here, so I will be discussing what I'm doing with this and how I'm going to get started with my painting. But some of you may prefer to actually do your drawing directly in paint the very beginning. Now, this is another way to approach this kind of painting. And it's a little bit more direct. And if you feel like you're going to be doing this sort of project in a single sitting, maybe two. That's a valid way to approach this. Now. To kind of keep this more geared towards all levels in an obviously more towards beginners. My suggestion would be to do some sort of a pencil drawing for your painting so that you have something to sort of pre-plan how your painting is going to get started. And it gives you a little bit more of a guide to work from. I find that in terms of an approach to doing a more completed painting, this is kind of a good initial step to where you can have a completed drawing started from the beginning. And it kind of just sets the stage for a successful painting. Now the reason I suggest doing this is that by doing an initial drawing, it allows you to problem-solve any potential areas that might be a little bit more difficult to figure out in paint. Now, again, this also depends on your drawing level and how comfortable you feel with oil paint as a medium to begin with. But I always find that by having an initial drawing, it allows me to get a little bit more comfortable with my subject, their shapes in any, you know, any sort of potential areas that might be a little difficult to draw. It's easier for me to solve those problems in pencil. Then it would be to just try and figure it out in paint. If I were painting Alla prima or more directly. So with this drawing that I've established here, what I would consider this is this is a little bit beyond what I would consider a basic block in. There's a little bit more embellishment in the shapes, um, and some of the design choices that I made in the features. And what I would actually say is that for this particular block in, I've kind of over-designed and over embellished a lot of the shapes. Now the reason I chose to do this is that I know going in, when I get to the painting, I'm going to soften a lot of that information down. And I don't want it to be as cut out or overstated as I've made it in this drawing. But my problem solving, some of these areas are shapes to begin with in the drawing. It's going to make it a little bit easier for me to go into my painting, knowing exactly all of these little shapes that I've really embellished in the drawing. It's going to allow me to paint with a little bit more confidence as I start filling them in. Now again, this is a personal preference in terms of how I approached this particular drawing. I've certainly overstated a lot of the features and design the shapes so that when I do get to the painting, I have something very specific to work into. Now everyone's level in terms of drawing or what information they might need or, you know, don't need is going to be up to you. So again, for this particular exercise, I'm kind of overstating some things and I would say, by doing so, I've lost maybe a little bit of the likeness, which is something I'll have to get back in the painting. But for me, I feel comfortable having a lot of perhaps overly designed shapes that I know I'm going to tone down once I start applying paint. Now if you decide to go and do an initial drawing, my recommendation would be to then go make xerox copies of your drawing. Now there's a couple of reasons we want to do this. The first reason being is that we don't want to lose or ruin the original drawing. We want to have something to use as a guide and our painting if necessary. So we want to preserve the original as best we can. The other thing is too, is we want to use the Xerox copies so that we can transfer the image directly to our Canvas. And that kind of saves us a little bit of time in the long run. So that way we don't have to figure out the drawing again that we spent so much time doing in the first place. Now the other advantage of making xerox copies is that I can also increase or decrease the scale of the image depending on how big or small I want to work. Oftentimes, when I'm going and making copies is all print off several different sizes just to see how they look. And so I'll go in increments of 5%, 10 percent, 15 percent, either up or down in scale just to see what it looks like. Because we also have to factor in how is this image is going to be placed on our Canvas compositionally, what are we thinking for the portrait? It allows you to make these choices without having to do multiple drawings or anything like that. So it is really beneficial to go and make some copies of your image once you have it ready or once you feel like the drawing is in a good enough place to where you can transfer it. Go ahead and make those copies. You you're preserving the original, but you're giving yourself the added flexibility to decide how big or small you want to work and if you need to make any changes before adding any paint or transferring. If I figured out a good size for the image that I want to work in, I'll usually print off a couple extra copies just in case if during the transfer process, if I if I mess up or anything like that, I have a another copy ready to go. And so in the next video I'll kind of discuss my transfer process so that we can take the image and get it onto a canvas. And again, all of this is completely optional if you want to follow along with this class. This is a very nice and easy procedural approach. If you decide that you want to just go Alla prima and do more direct painting, then you can kinda bypass a lot of this, but you're just starting out with painting in general, then this might be a good suggestion to follow along and the step-by-step so that I'm discussing here. 4. Beginning transfer: Okay, So as far as starting the transfer process, what I like to do, and this is just my personal preference for working because you can, you can essentially transfer a number of different ways. Some require a little bit more effort than others. But for me I prefer to err on the side of simplicity. So what I'm gonna do is I'm going to take my Xerox copy and I just have some vine charcoal here. And so all I'm gonna do is essentially just rub some vine charcoal on the back of the image. Then I'm gonna go ahead and place this on my canvas. And then I'm going to trace over the drawing itself with a ballpoint pen. So what ends up happening is, is the charcoal that I put on the back of the paper is going to get imprinted onto the canvas. And then once I have that image there in charcoal, I'll go over that again with an ink pen so that way I can set all the lines onto the canvas. So you don't really need to do anything super fancy. Here. We're just kinda just scribbling the charcoal and I'll probably end up speeding this up. The only thing you want to make sure that there's enough charcoal on the paper. So you may end up holding the paper up into the light and make sure that you've covered everywhere in the drawings. Now. Because you want to make sure that as you go over the drawing and transfer it to the canvas that you're not missing anything. And so what you can also do is, and this is also why it's important to preserve the original drawing is that if something is off, when you transfer, you can you can kind of double check your drawing and make sure that nothing is missing. So again, kind of having the xerox copies is a good safety measure just so that you have a little extra insurance knowing that you can always go back and refer to the original just in case. So again, nothing terribly fancy here. Just going to cover this up a little bit more. And then we're going to go ahead and transmit this to the canvas. So with my Xerox covered and charcoal on the back, I'm going to tape it to my Canvas and simply trace over my drawing with a ballpoint pen. I want to make sure that I push firmly enough to leave an imprint of charcoal on my canvas. But I don't want to press too hard that I score a line in the Canvas itself. You'll want to make sure that you go over your entire drawing as you trace over it with pen. And if you feel like you've missed a spot or anything like that, you can lift up the Xerox and make sure that you have the impression that you need with the charcoal. And if not, you can trace over the line again if the charcoal is too faint. Now keep in mind, this is the first step in the transfer process. We will have one more step after this, so that we can essentially seal the entire drawing to the canvas before we move on to getting any paint on the surface. One thing I will say is that really fine details are really, they're a little tricky to get with the charcoal transfers. So you really just want to make sure that the big shapes and all the important elements like the placement of the features, the angle, or the tilt of the head. If there is one, all of those elements that are really crucial for the portrait, you want to make sure that those are transferred as accurately as you can make it. There are some small details, even in this particular drawing here that I know I'm not going to be able to transfer perfectly. And that's okay as long as I get the general placement and the general shape of the details that I need, I can always add in more as we move forward with the rest of the painting. So I'm really just trying to get a good general impression on the surface. And then after that, again, we're going to seal the charcoal lines with some ink so that we have a, hopefully a closer drawing to work from before we get painting. Now I know this seems like a lot of work before we get to any sort of painting. And truth be told, it is, however, the reason we're doing this is it allows us to sort of remove the drawing aspect from the painting once we get there. And by that, I mean, It's very hard to think about drawing and painting and all of these things at once. If you're working Alla prima or working more directly. So by going through all the steps of the drawing and then the transfer, by the time we get to the painting, we've essentially already problem-solved a lot of the areas. And so you can really just focus on the painting aspect of the project and not so much the drawing. Now that doesn't necessarily mean we're going to have to completely forget about drawing or anything like that. But by the time we get to add paint to the surface, we've already done the majority of problem-solving, so that kinda saves us a little bit of time in the long run. Now again, this sort of procedure is entirely optional. But I think as a beginning painter, or if you're in the early stages of learning how to paint. This really does kinda help bridge the gap between drawing and painting together and kind of blends them so that it kind of, you get a nice procedure that makes it a little bit easier to manage rather than trying to juggle too many things at once with direct painting. 5. Inking the transfer: So after tracing all the lines for my transfer, I'm left with this charcoal impression on my canvas. Now obviously, the transfer drawing that's left behind is nowhere near as detailed as my drawing is. And that's totally okay. There's gonna be a lot of little details that you simply can't pick up when you're doing the initial transfer as the charcoal really won't give you that fine detail. The main thing we're after right now is really just the placement, the overall shapes and proportions so that now we can take this transfer that we have and we're going to ink over it and basically seal the charcoal in to the canvas and have a sort of final drawing that we can start to paint into. So what I'm gonna do here is I'm going to take an ink pen, which is basically just like a traditional quill pen. And I have some India ink and a sepia color, which is just like a warm brown. You can also use black or any other kind of color, but sepia and black are going to be the most common that you find. What we're gonna do is I'm basically going to just trace over the entire drawing once again, but I'm going to do it in ink so that I'm left with a permanent line. Now again, because the transfer is not as detailed as the drawing, if I want to add additional details to the sort of finished transfer in ink, I can do so with the dip pen. Again, I'm not really too concerned about having every last detail from the drawing. It is nice to have certain elements of it though, so that you have a very clear description about where you're going to paint and what sort of information you want to leave in. And so all I'm gonna do here is again, just trace over my charcoal lines. And really, you know, you don't have to use a lot of ink a little bit. It's gonna go a long way. Again. All we're doing is just sealing those lines in so that what ends up happening is the ink is so permanent that even if we paint over it, we're still going to be left with that impression, at least initially. Now obviously as we add opaque paint, we're going to ultimately cover all of these lines. But in the early stages of a painting, it's nice to have a very clear and descriptive drawing. So then we're kind of almost just filling in the lines, say, in the initial block in of the painting. Now again, depending on how much detail you may or may want or need in your transfer, you can add additional details with the ink pen if it helps you. Now for this particular drawing, There's a few details in the features that I feel are going to be important so that I have very specific shapes to work into. But outside of that, I don't need to do a lot of the sort of hatched lines that I have in the drawing necessarily as those were kinda just more details for myself when I did the drawing. So realistically, again, you're kind of just picking and choosing what's going to be the most beneficial for you. But the more important part about doing this inking process is that it gives us a very permanent drawing on our canvas to work into so that we don't have to worry about losing the drawing that we spent all this time in. As we start adding initial layers of paint, we always have a drawing to go back to if we were to make any mistakes along the way. So now that we have all of the lines covered with the ink, you can kind of see what drawing you have established on the Canvas. And if you need to add any more detail and ink, you can sort of do so at this particular point, but I have all my lines in. So now what I wanna do is I want to just get rid of the charcoal. And so I'm just going to take a paper towel and the ink itself dries immediately. So you don't necessarily need to worry about smearing it or anything like that. It is a permanent ink, so you have a nice impression left on your canvas and you don't have to really fuss with it too much. And so really at this point, we want to just have a nice clean transfer so that we can start adding some paint to the surface. Because the next step after this is I'm going to want to tone my canvas just so that I can kill the white. And then I can slowly start building up some layers in paint so that we can get this started. But at this particular stage, you want to just make sure that you have some sort of a transfer to your Canvas. Again, using the India ink is kind of an ideal choice because it is such a permanent line that you can kind of work into and not worry about losing your drawing. There's certainly a number of ways to transfer an image to a canvas. I find that this one is the easiest for me to work with and it's very straightforward. I've seen other methods where you use either either pure oil paint to transfer or you use oil pastels to transfer. But I find this one is a little bit easier for me. It's cleaner and easier to work with. So this is something I would recommend if you're going to go through the steps of the process that I'm showing. I would recommend trying this transfer first just for its simplicity and cleanliness. 6. Staining your canvas: So now that I have my completed transfer, my next step is to stain my Canvas. There's a couple of reasons I like doing this. Namely, is to get rid of the white of the canvas is it's very difficult to judge your values when painting on a white surface, but it's also difficult on your eyes in my opinion. So we just want to neutralize the surface with a nice middle value tone here. So I'm essentially just using my raw umber and I'm diluting it a little bit with some solvent because it's a earth pigment. And with the addition of the solvent, this is going to dry essentially overnight, but it'll be, it should be fairly dry within an hour or so. So it's really again, just to kind of set up the painting for the later stages, but also again to just kill the white of the canvas so that as we start applying our values, they're a little bit easier to judge when we're mixing from our palette and then applying them to the surface. Now in terms of the overall value, I try not to go too dark. I just want to aim for somewhere in the middle. Now, obviously we don't want to completely cover our transfer because we spent all this time doing it. So we just want a value to essentially kill the white of the canvas. But it is nice to have some of those transparencies in the painting so you can decide if you want to go maybe a little darker towards your shadow value. That is entirely an option. But for the most part I suggest getting a nice middle tone so that we're just getting rid of the y and we still have a very easy read of our transfer that we established. And so any sort of streaks that you have when you apply the paint, you can just kind of smooth out with a paper towel so that you're left with a nice even tone. It is sometimes you can decide if you want a little bit of texture in the stain or not. That's kind of a personal preference. I generally lean towards having a nice even surface to work on. But that's entirely up to you. I just find that by smoothing it out, it makes it easier to see all my lines just a little bit easier in my transfer. So I will have a tendency to just smooth out that initial stain so that it's nice and even. But you can see here we just have a nice middle value. Nothing too, too dark or too light, just kind of somewhere in the middle. But you can still see all my transfer lines so that it's going to be very easy for me to work into this. So you can see here my initial stain has dried and all I've done at this point here is I've gone into my shadows and just darken them with a little bit more raw umber. So even these initial stains through here are still incredibly transparent, but they're just a little bit darker than the background stain and the stain that's in the light. Now the reason I do this is just to give myself a little clearer separation of light and dark. And all I've done is I've taken a little bit of my raw umber. It's still very transparent. And all I've done is just darken where my shadows are and reestablish where the features are. This just kinda makes it easier for me to see so that as I begin adding the initial layers of paint, I have a very clear depiction of the light and dark effect. As I begin the painting, I always prefer to start from my shadow side and then gradually build out into my lights. So in the next video you'll see me start that. But for your own project, these initial layers are kind of just setting the stage. So I would suggest putting in that initial stain. And then depending on your reference or what you're painting from, if you have a very clear light and dark effect that's happening, I would suggest darkening the shadow side of your, your reference or your portrait first so that you'd get a easier separation from lightened dark so that once they dry and everything sets up, it's going to be very easy to work out of our shadows and gradually paint into the lights. 7. Beginning first pass: So as I begin the initial pass, what I always like to do is I re-establish the terminator, or essentially where the edge of the shadow and the light meat. That's sort of like my home base when I begin a painting. As I like to get the shadow side of the painting established first and then gradually work out into my lights. Now, I find this just be an easier process for me to follow as working from dark to light. It's much easier for me to paint those transitions then if I work from light to dark, now, ultimately it is kind of personal preference, but I find for me that it's a lot easier to build out of my shadows and then just gradually lighten my values as I roll towards the light. Now, this is something you should play with, but if you're just starting out, I would suggest starting with your shadow side. Buildup that area first and then gradually start making transitional values towards the light. Most of the values I'm putting in right now are not overly dark. I am using a little bit of white in the mixture, but not a whole lot. So a lot of it is pure, raw umber, but I'm spreading it out so that it's not opaque. It's still kind of semi-transparent. There's a lot I'm going to have to do in the shadows as I get more information covered. But at least for now in these early stages, I want to just establish a darker value so that I get a sense of where my shadows are really sitting. And then I can start adding some transitional values as I work out in the light. Starting out from the shadow edge, I like to just slowly build the value around this area because the greatest degree of turning in the form is going to happen along this edge. As it gets, as it builds out slowly towards the light. The separation and form is going to be much more even. But right at that terminator as this cheek is rolling, that's what I really want to focus on, especially because this, this whole shadow side, It's really kind of establishing where the light is sort of spreading out from that shadow mass. So the transitions through there need to be as good as I can make them. And that doesn't necessarily mean, you know, really smooth per se, but just the sort of the stair-step effect in the values needs to be very well controlled so that I can get that illusion of rolling happening from the cheek. Now the one temptation in this area is to make the values in the cheek much lighter. But what's happening here in this particular instance is that we have this little pocket of light in the cheek that's surrounded by all this shadow. So we have the shadow from the cheek, we have shadow from the nose, shadow from the mouth and the eye socket. And what ends up happening is, is we're getting this little pocket of light surrounded by all this dark. And so our eyes start to assume that, you know, oh, this must be really bright and really light. But what's happening is, is all of these shadow shapes in this concentrated area, or making that little pocket of light here in the cheek appear much brighter than it actually is. So what I'm having to really think about is, what is the brightest portion of this portrait? And relatively speaking, where is this cheek? Facing the light? Even though it's surrounded by a lot of dark. I want to be thinking about where the primary light source is, where's the brightest source of light hitting? And so in this case, the highest sort of peek in form is going to be the top of her forehead. So that's sort of the brightest part of this particular painting. And so I can't really make this cheek in this area overly bright because then it's going to throw off the overall light effect. So that's something I, I'm keeping in mind so that I can keep these values under control and I'm not letting my eyes be tricked by all these shadow shapes that are giving this illusion of making the cheek brighter than what it actually is. And so as I'm adding some values, I'm going to just kind of go back to my Terminator and just keep reworking the area so that the values transition smooth as I can kind of get them, or at least to a degree which I feel happy with. And what I generally like to do is you'll see me work from section to section. So I'm not trying to jump all over the painting at all. I like to stay in a focused area and just gradually work from one piece to another. Now, this isn't necessarily the only way to do it, but I find it just allows me to really hone in on one area before moving on to the next. And so I can try and establish some relative degree of form so that I can feel good about what information I'm putting in before just start jumping around to other areas. Now you can certainly decide to move around, but it just it makes it a little harder to feel like I'm establishing form if I'm just moving around all over the place to suddenly, now there's an argument that you would want to bring up the painting sort of as a whole. And I totally understand that approach. I just find them because I've already have a well-established drawing. And I have a simple lighten dark effect established, I feel confident enough. And what I've established in these early stages to where I can really just focus in on one area for a little bit of time and try and get it as best I can before I move on to the next area. And so again, while it's very tempting to make some of these areas appear brighter than what they are. What really ends up happening as again, there's these little tiny pockets of light that are surrounded by so much shadow. So it's giving us the illusion that they're much brighter than what they are. But the problem is, is if I were to make them bright or a lighter value, it throws off the entire light effect of what's happening in the portrait. So I'm constantly reminding myself that these areas can't really be that bright based off of where my light sources and how these shadows are interacting with them. So I'm not just trying to copy what I'm seeing in my reference. I'm trying to interpret how the light is affecting these forms and sort of making a logical decision that if my light source is really concentrated on, let's say the forehead and on the plains of the nose and on the right hand side of the face, then a lot of these values in the shadow side just can't be that bright. It just wouldn't make sense really. But my eyes want to sort of play tricks on me. And, and this is kind of what we call a simultaneous contrast in the sense that we're seeing these light shapes against these really stark dark shapes. And it kind of, it's creating that illusion that they appear much brighter than what they actually are. So, but we just have to remind ourselves that from a logical standpoint based off our lighting scenario, that these values cannot be this bright. And so if I kind of follow that and just think more logically about what's happening as my light sources interacting with these forms. That I simply just can't make them. I can't make them as bright as, as they appear. So that's something that you just want to constantly remind yourself depending on your reference material and the orientation of the light and where these forums are actually facing. It's very easy to get caught up in those, those things where these little light shapes just want to make themselves appear much brighter than what they are. But again, simply based on logic and what's happening with the form. They can't, they really just can't be that bright. 8. Continuing the first pass: So as I'm continuing along here, right now, the painting might feel, as you're watching, it might feel that a lot of this looking really dark and I think you wouldn't necessarily be wrong saying that. And what I'm trying to anticipate as I move forward in the painting is that even though these values appear really dark, by the time I finally establish the really brighter portions of the portraits. So the planes of the nose, the top of the forehead, and those areas. It's going to balance out what we're seeing here right now. And so we're sort of viewing some of these values sort of out of context at the moment. Because in the sections that we're working in, we're working on the darker portions of the face. And so even though Could be painting in the shadow and a little bit in the light here. The relative value range through this area is still relatively dark. So this is the one part of working section to section like this that can be a little bit difficult at first is because you sometimes can lose the overall context or some sort of value hierarchy in the entirety of the portrait. And that's, I don't know, it's kind of a personal preference thing. And so you could very well establish a small patch of brighter values in the painting earlier on if you decided that you needed that. And for me, I've kind of I'm kind of used to working this way at this point that I kinda know that I'm anticipating a much brighter value range in other areas of the portrait, so I don't want to diminish those bright values by painting these darker areas in the portrait. Too bright, if that makes sense. So I'm trying to anticipate where the value range is going to be going as I get further along in the portrait. And right now, for the areas that I'm working in, the relative values are actually pretty. They're not super dark, but they're dark enough to where I want the lower portion of the face to feel like it's not receiving as much light as say the cheek and then ultimately like the nose planes and then the forehead. So I'm trying to just keep that in mind as I'm working that the areas that I'm currently trying to paint are not really receiving that much light, so I don't want to get them too bright, too soon. And if anything, I'm going to err on the side of maybe even making them a little bit darker. And as the time comes, if I need to adjust the values a little bit, I can always do that in additional layers. But for now, for the light effect that I know I'm trying to chase in the painting. I can't make these values too bright. Now this particular eye here is pretty heavy and shadow and so there's a little tiny pocket of light that I see that's kind of coming under the brow, but it's so dark in value that it's not going to really change all that much. Same thing, There's a little bit of a tiny sliver of light that I see in the top part of the lid here. But this whole area because of the light source and how it's hitting her brow ridge. There's not going to be a whole lot going on in terms of value change is going to be very subtle and there's just gonna be a little tiny sliver of light in the white of the eye. So I'm going to be very careful about how I put some of these values in here because it really can't be all that Brighton. Realistically as I'm thinking about this, I am asking myself, is this I may not really be the dominant eye in the portrait, so I might favor the eye that's out in the light side of the face to put more attention and more detail. And so that the one singular I in the light becomes the sort of focal point in the portrait. It's not necessarily means that I'm going to not pay any attention to this eye and the shadow because obviously it has to be there. And there is some key components of information that needs to take place. But generally speaking, when you're doing a portrait is you want to choose a dominant eye and not have equal focus on both eyes. So that there's some sort of hierarchy or a center of focus in the gaze that you're painting. Now this particular area of the eye, I do know that I'm going to have to be somewhat careful and I see it on both sets of eyes. The lower lid appears to be somewhat heavy or just the little sort of the bag under the eye feels a little heavy and a lot of it is because of the light source in the shadow, but that's also part of her character type. Now, the one thing I do have to be careful though, is that in a female portrait, this is something that you wouldn't want to overstate. So I'm going to be very mindful about some of the values that I put in place in these particular areas. And I may end up having to adjust kind of what I'm seeing a little bit in my reference so that it's a little bit more flattering I think, to the portrait. And so that's something because it's a younger female. I don't want to overemphasize these kinds of shapes is that they'll have a tendency to age the model quite a bit if they're overstated. So that's something I'm keeping in mind as I'm working in these areas is that even though there's some shadow that I do have to have in here, some of the shapes in the lower lid and sort of the bag under the eye. I want to be very mindful about how I choose to portray them. And for the most part, I would actually probably want to understate them so that it doesn't overly age the model and doesn't appear overly sort of distinct or overstated. And so again, a lot of the values, even though I see little pockets of light that are appearing in this particular eye, I'm going to kind of knock them back really because when I squint down, a lot of this information starts to blend together. And so if I start poking little holes of light into these areas, it kind of breaks up that entirety of the shadow and I don't want to lose that feeling. Because overall, when I'm thinking about the portrait is I wanted to have an impact and I want it to have readability from a distance. And so when we start breaking up the shadow shape too much with little pockets of light, then it starts to break down that effect. And so even though I do see them in the reference, I'm going to be very careful about how I state some of these light shapes and I don't want to, again overstayed them or make them too bright. And just really want to think about the shadow as if it were this large mass that I'm working into. And this kinda goes for the same and the side plane of the nose. And some of these lighter values that I see as it gets closer to the tear duct of the eye. Again, based off of the light source and the shadow that I see in the eye socket. All of these values are still relatively dark to even more of a middle range. And it's very tempting to overstate them with some lighter values, but I have to just keep in mind that I have to save those bright values for the other side of the face because that's where it's really going to count. And so even if I have to maybe darken some of these areas a bit more so that it really emphasizes the light side. I'll probably go ahead and do that. And so as I'm starting to fill this in, again, a lot of the areas are going to be really subdued in kind of a darker middle value. Even though there's a little, there's little bits of the eye that are good, are receiving some white. But because of the area that it's in and obviously the, the overall shape of the eye socket. Those values are still going to be fairly dark. Even, even kind of as we get into some of the light areas and the lower lid and a little bit of the white of the eye. If I get too bright with those values, it's going to immediately sort of cut that eye out and it's going to jump out way too much. So I really want to keep this particular eye that's in shadow, relatively simple. And keeping the value ranges really close together. And then ultimately the only thing that's going to allow this eye to jump out is a few hits of light value and then the highlight kinda towards the end that I see in the eye. But other than that, the I in the shadow really wants to be subdued. Doesn't want to jump out too much because then it's going to really, It's kinda separate itself from the shadow if I put in too much information and it just wouldn't make sense in that context because then it's like, okay, well is the I naught in shadow, and then there's all this other shadow around it. So when you have an eye that's really subdued and shadow like this, you really want to kind of minimize the amount of information that you're putting in. And where I'll really put more information is that other eye that is out in the light side of the face. And that'll give me more opportunity to push a sort of focus in the portrait. But I really want this shadow side. I just sort of sit back and space and really kind of almost play like a back seat to the other eye. 9. Establishing the eye and nose: So as I get more information into the eye, I do want to establish the dark of the iris. And on her, even though she has lighter green eyes, the wrap, the relative value is still kind of dark, especially in this shadow area. So I only see a little sliver of some of the iris color, but for the most part I want to just keep it as a dark symbol shape so that the eye reads as a larger mass. Now, some of the interior portion of the whites of the eye. I've stated a little bit, but I know I'm going to probably have to go back in and darken them down a little bit so that the eye sits in the socket a little better. One thing that's also going to help starting to build information around the eye. So getting some of the side of the forehead, getting some of the side plane of the nose that are established is really going to help kind of bridge some of these areas together. And then I can maybe make a better judge of some of the values as I'm putting them in there. Oftentimes when I'm starting the eye, there's a tendency that I'll sometimes overstate them a little bit knowing full well that I'm going to have to go back and make adjustments. And part of that for me is it's easier for me to go back in and make adjustments then to try and get this perfectly finessed, you know, sort of feature established right from the very first start. Now, some people are very good at getting everything perfect the first time, but that is, that is certainly not me. So I do like to kind of slowly build things up and kind of just make adjustments as I go along. And I know realistically in order to get exactly what I want, I'm probably going to have to make an additional pass. And realistically, I think for me, the first past is more or less kind of just setting the stage for the entire painting. And then I want to try and get things as good as I can make them in the first pass. But I know that odds are, I'm going to have to go and make a second pass. And a lot of areas to really sort of fine tune it to exactly what I'm looking for. And I would say for certain features like eyes and even like the nose, those areas are generally a little trickier for me. So I usually have to do at least a second pass on some of those areas to get them just kinda how I like them. And oftentimes all kind of, again, initially overstate maybe some of that information because it helps me just kinda really see what I'm working with. But again, that's just kind of more of a personal thing on my end, but you may find that it helps you as well, that you can kind of put some information in. Even if it's maybe a little bit much or you put in too much information at first, that's okay because you can always knock it back later once the paint dries or if you need to make adjustments and a second pass, you totally have that option. Now as I continue working down here, I'm going to add a little more value in the shadows. And it's really just so that I can see the other values and how things are building up around it. So that's kinda why I put some of that shadow value behind the side of the jaw just so I can see the relative darkness in that cheek that we're seeing here because realistically there is a little bit of reflected light that's coming in on that shadow side of the cheek. But I don't really want to overstate that reflected light, but it is there. But by putting in a little bit more shadow value and hopefully it'll help me kind of see some of the other values in the surrounding areas a little bit easier. Most of the paint I'm putting in right now is relatively thin, so you can still see some of the canvas poking through in some of these sections. And that's kinda how I like to keep my shadows for the most part is I don't necessarily want opaque shadows or anything like that. I want to keep them in that kind of happy medium of a translucent to semi translucent area. And there could be certain areas where I might hit a accent, where I might use a little opaque paint. But for the most part I like to keep my shadows on the thinner side. So it kinda wanna start establishing the front plane of the nose. So that way I can really start to see what I've developed so far in the shadow side, as well as in this cheek that I've built so far. Now, the front plane of the nose is going to be quite a bit brighter than a lot of the information I have so far. Because relative to the light source, that front plane of the nose is actually receiving quite a bit of light. Now I just want to make sure that I'm building some of the information up to that. So through the little tiny keystone shape between the eyes, there's kind of a middle transition value that will go towards the top plane of the nose as well as transition into the front plane of the forehead. So I wanna make sure that I have at least somewhat of a middle value there so that it shows the distinct separation of planes. And so as I start adding paint for the front plane of the nose, I'm going to still be really conservative with my values. I never like to just immediately put in a bright or a saturated value. I like to slowly build up to it so that I still have a good degree of control in the range that I'm establishing. I know I'm going to gradually work up to a very bright sort of value over all. But I don't want to just immediately start putting opaque paint or heavy impasto paint or anything like that on the surface just yet. I want to build it up so that I can gradually see the light increasing as I'm building up the nose in this particular area. This will really help to, as I kind of start to establish the far side of the face, which is receiving quite a bit more light overall as well. And as we start to introduce some of these brighter values, you'll hopefully see that the shadow side that we've developed early on starts to fall more into place and doesn't feel as dark as it once did when we first started. 10. Establishing mouth and forehead: So continuing along, I really want to start to establish just more of the nose, the mouth, and then start to build up to the forehead. And it's really more so that I can start to see where the overall light effect is really going to take place. Again, kind of what I've established now is a lot of middle values, but nothing that is overly bright. So I just want to be able to see a little bit better where the overall light effect is going. So I want to start to establish some more information. And as I'm working here through this side of the face, It's all been in a very similar range, but it's going to be helpful. I think at this point, we haven't enough established here on this side of the face that we want to start exploring some brighter values. But before I do that, I do want to get some of the other features established. We have the nose roughly blocked in. So I want to just block in the rest of the mouth so that I can kind of attach it to this cache shadow below the nose and tie those two shapes together. The mouth itself is relatively simple, and I would also say that given the lighting scenario, there's a lot of values in this area that are going to appear quite a bit lighter than what they should be. Most notably in the top part of the upper limb. There's kind of a concentration of light through this area, but I need to be really careful that I don't overstate the values because then otherwise, it's going to make the mouth feel like it's receiving way more light than it actually is, especially considering sense. The nose is casting a shadow on the left side of the mouth. And so there's just a little bit of light on the opposite side That's kind of poking through that it's receiving light from the cheek that's trickling down into that side of the mouth. Really quick here, I wanted to just show you what it looks like with a pure white against some of these values. Because I know that ultimately the peak in the forehead is going to be kind of closer to that white spectrum in terms of its intensity of light. And so you can see the little bit of white here on my palette knife is a good degree brighter than anything else I've established in the portrait so far. So what I'm gonna do here in a little bit is I'm going to put a little bit of white up in the forehead just so that you can see for contexts sake what that looks like. Because again, we're still in this middle value range where you might be thinking, he's painting these things really dark relative to the reference. But again, we're not trying to copy what we're seeing. We're trying to establish an interpretation of the form and light hitting that form. And so we need to start thinking about how things are existing in space. And so that's kind of why I'm working in the value range that I am right now is that I need to have the room and the flexibility to build up to these really bright values in the forehead. And so if I overextend myself and make some of these areas in the lower half of the face too bright, I'm going to lose that opportunity for the brightness and the forehead to even take place because I'm going to have those values in too many places. And so just want to attach the mouth to the lower part of the chin here. And then I want to move up into the forehead so that we can start to explore some of these lighter values. Now, again, what I'm going to do here is I know the forehead itself is going to be a sort of a along even transition. So obviously the forehead is going to be a kind of a smoother surface for the most part. And for her particular type, it's very even there's no sort of undulation in that forehead. It's very long plane. So I'm going to put a little spot of white here and I know fully well that I'm going to paint over this, but I just wanted to put a spot of value up there so that you can see that is sort of what I'm aiming for in terms of a peak brightness in the form. So as soon as I put that white there, you can start to see now the rest of the values in the face don't really appear as dark as they did without that value there. So it's still going to be quite a bit of work before we can start to tie everything together. But hopefully by just seeing a little bit of bright value there, it starts to put the rest of the values in the face with some degree of contexts. So now we have something very specific to work up to. So as I start working on the forehead, my idea that I have in my head as I'm going to take from the shadow side of the forehead and just gradually built this gradation all the way across to the other side and work up to that highlight. So as they start building the forehead out, I want to go ahead and establish some of the darks surrounding it, so I'm not going to fill in the hair per se, but just some of the dark little pockets I see so that it kind of frames the forehead and will give me a better idea about the value range that I need to stick in as I'm working across the entire expanse of the forehead. The one thing I'm going to be keeping in mind as I work across is that a lot of the values through here are going to be very sort of subtle and transitional so that there's not gonna be any sharp jumps. And so I just, I'm looking for a nice even gradation across this entire form that's gradually working up towards that highlight. Now, I will say that making really even gradations and transitions can sometimes be a little difficult. So I end up just kind of making one mixture and then just kind of gradually brightening it and then putting it down and then gradually adding a little bit of white as I work across that entire mass. And that's just kinda makes it a little bit easier for me to navigate rather than constantly having to just read Nick's new piles of paint or anything like that. In general, I would say doing long pieces of form that are very gradual and consistent and there's not a lot of undulation in the form can sometimes be a little tricky. So I just kind of tend to slow down, put, mixed my values, and then put a piece of paint down. And if it feels wrong, then I'll adjust it and just keep going until it looks right. But generally with these long areas of form, it helps to just slow down and take your time. 11. Continuing the forehead: So as I'm working along, again, I'm just trying to maintain a relative consistency so that my gradations across the forehead remain nice. And even. Now a lot of times what I'll do if I'm uncertain about a value change is I'll put a little piece of paint down and see if it if it's sort of blends in well with what I've established so far. If there's too much of a jump in the value, it's going to stand out like a sore thumb. So that's kind of a way I try and engage myself as I'm building. And so what I'm thinking is is I'm also, I'm thinking across the forehead from side to side, but then I'm also thinking from the brow ridge towards the top of the forehead, there needs to be a transition going horizontally as well as vertically. Now, I'm not overly thinking about that too much because the values themselves need to just have a consistency as they travel across the forehead. But I'm thinking of this large form that I'm having to just slightly adjust my value range so that I'm getting closer and closer to this peak highlight that I see in the forehead at the very top. Now as I'm building this out, the only thing that might potentially be a little tricky is because I don't have the rest of the hair in or the dark values surrounding it. I very well could be not making these transitions as bright or as luminous as they could be. Now, I'm fully aware of that and so on. It's one of those things where I'm keeping it in the back of my mind that I could potentially go brighter with some of these values. But in the meantime, I'm, I'm just focusing on the transition so that the form reads properly. Once I establish a local dark value for the hair, It's gonna give me a much better assessment about where I can take this a little bit further if necessary. And by that time, all I would really need to do is paint over the sum of these values that I'm establishing right now, because I don't think it's going to be the case of darkening some of these values in the forehead. I have a feeling, if anything, I'm going to be making them even brighter. So painting them over in a second pass by adding some opaque paint. Or let's say more white directly to the surface is going to be pretty easy for the most part. So for the time being now because I haven't fully established the hair, I'm just focus on making the form as good as I can. And then once I establish the dark values in the hair, I can better judge how much brighter I'm potentially may need to go. So as I get to the far side of the forehead here, I do have to have some small transitional values as the forehead transitions into the side plane of the head. I don't see a whole lot from this particular angle, but there is enough to where I do need to indicate some small plane change with just a subtle shift in value. I'm not even sure how much of this would even show up on the screen, but it does have to be there because if I just were to make it a consistent value, then it's almost like the forehead is not really turning in space as the side plane tucks into the hair. So I just need to have a subtle change right in that area. And then the rest will sort of tuck into the dark shape of the hair. Now as we're getting close to filling in this forehead shape, hopefully you can see compared to the shadow side of the face that we've established so far. Having these bright values kind of just makes them sit a little bit better. And the overall portrait, I know initially kinda felt a little bit dark, but we're really now as we kind of, we're going to start filling in the rest of the face. And then from there we're really just going to keep going brighter and brighter. And I think ultimately what will help a lot is once we start adding the hair as well as the background, hopefully the shadow side will start to recede even more into the darker values of the picture itself. And then we can really focus on building up our lights again and getting a nice luminous effect across her face. 12. Painting the eye: So now that we have the forehead painted in, we can start focusing in on this. I. Now the tricky part about this particular eyes because it's in the light and there's no shadow pattern around anything really. It's kind of just all by itself. And so sometimes that can be a little difficult to handle in the sense that we don't really have a shadow that we can lock onto. So what I have a tendency to do is to really focus on the brow shape and the surrounding areas of the eye itself. So just under the eyebrow will have a little bit of a halftone value surrounding the eye itself as it's being nestled into the socket. And we'll also have the lower lid as a shape that we can lock onto. The reason I bring this up is that oftentimes when you have, in this particular case, we have a sort of a dark value of the eye surrounded by all of this light. That the tendency would be to paint the eye in such a way that it feels cut out and sort of separated from the rest of the portrait. Whereas in the other eye we have kind of it's tied to the form shadow across the forehead as well as the cheek. So it's very easy to integrate that I into the portrait. But with this particular eye being out in the middle of this sort of sea of bright values, it can sometimes be a little difficult to get it to adhere properly. So what I'm gonna do in this particular instance is really focus in on the middle values of the eye and make sure that it kind of blends in together so that the eye doesn't feel like it's just pasted on our stamped out in the middle of all these bright values. So I really like to spend a lot of time just working outside the edges of the eye. So that again, I'm focusing on the middle values that are going to allow me to essentially make it feel like it's part of the rest of the skull and make it feel like it's embedded into the socket. And realistically, there's not a whole lot of light values per se in this particular i, we're going to have a little bit of the white of the eye in some of the upper lid, but for the most part, it's a lot of middle values. And then the brighter values are going to be in the nose plane as well as the cheekbone right next to it. So I'm still thinking in kind of a middle value range to establish the general shape. And then I can slowly start building around the eye with some of the brighter values. And hopefully it will feel like it's part of the portrait and we don't cut it out too much. Now as I start adding some darks into the iris itself. Again, it's something I'm going to be somewhat conservative with. I do know that the iris is going to have to be a darker value is that's simply the darkest portion of the eye. But I just have to be careful about the surrounding values because if they don't sort of it here with the rest of what's going on. Again, it's going to. That dark value and the iris is just going to feel like I just sort of punched it out with like a stamp or something like that. So that's something I'm trying to be careful of. Now, there's also the lower lid that I'm going to have to contend with. And that is another another area where like I mentioned in the previous size that I don't want to overstate a lot of those shapes. So I'm going to have to be very careful as I bring that up because it is somewhat of a darker value. When I look at her face and I squint down and I see the shapes. The lower lid, it has a very prominent sort of shape and value to it, but I don't want to overstate it and make it feel like there's this large bag under the eye. Or I don't want to sort of age her significantly by overstating that shape. So I'm going to have to be really careful as I put this in. So I just want to get some of these values through the side plane of the nose as well as the tear duct. So we can see how it frames the rest of the eye here. And as we build up this area, I'm just kinda double-checking myself to make sure that the values themselves don't get too jumpy and from one shape to the next. Because even though we have some of the darker values in the eye, we don't want to have these radical jumps from one shape to the next because then it just, there would be like a lack of cohesion between the entire portrait if, if those values just jump too far out from one another. And so as I put in this lower lid here, I'm just being mindful again that some of these, some of these values through here, they look fairly dark in the reference, but again, based off my light source in, based off of what I'm trying to convey with some of these shapes is I don't want them to get overstated or be too prominent on her because again, it's going to have a tendency to age her and she's a she's a younger female and they just wouldn't feel right if I overstated some of these shapes. And so as I'm kind of connecting some of the top portion of the cheek plane is going to allow me to assess some of the values are established in the eye already. This is gonna get relatively bright in the top plane of the cheek. And then it's gonna kinda turn in as the, as the cheek sort of rolls under and on her, she kind of has a prominent cheekbones. So we're going to see a good, you know, some degree of turning isn't sort of tucks in. And you can see the line I've indicated in the drawing as that cheekbone kind of tucks into the lower jaw and we have that overlapping that's taking place. So we just going to tie the cheek into the rest of the portrait here and you can start to see it slowly taking shape overall. And considering this is still the first pass in the painting itself, it doesn't feel too bad so far, I think we're still going to have to do a second pass and kind of make some adjustments and kind of just add some finesse to some areas. But from a value standpoint and a form standpoint, I feel like we're sitting in a more or less a good spot. I just need to fill in the rest of the portraits so then I can sort of assess everything as a whole. And I feel like once we get in the rest of the face, start adding the hair and the background. It's going to sort of reset the entire painting. And then we can really fine tune areas where we need to make more adjustments and then move the portrait forward. 13. Adding the Chin & hair: So as we start finishing off the cheek, we can really start to begin to see how the portrait is taking shape and I need to attach it to the rest of the mouth. And then again, be mindful of some of the values that are taking place right here. One crucial area in this particular part of the portrait is that laugh line that's extending from the corner of the nose and then tying into the cheekbone. Now on her I do see it as being a very sort of specific shape. But I also need to be mindful that if I have that lifeline in the mouth too prominent, it is one of those things sort of like the lower lid and the AI that if it's overstated, it's going to add a lot of years to her and the portraits. So on a female, especially a younger female type, that's something I want to be very mindful of. So I do want to include it because I think it's very much a part of her character type. But I just don't want to be very careful about how dark of a value that gets and then how prominent of a line it creates. So again, I'm being mindful that it's something I feel that's necessary as part of, as part of her likeness and her portrait. But I just need to be very subtle about it and not overstate it because otherwise it's going to change her look dramatically if it's too prominent. And as I attach this area through here, and the reference, some of the values start to get fairly bright. But again, being mindful that there's a lot of dark, especially the cache shadow from the nose, as well as the dark value from the top lip and the node of the mouth kinda give me the illusion of those areas being much brighter. But again, they really can't be. And so what I'm going to do here is I want to finish off the rest of the lower jaw through this area, but I want to establish the dark shadow in the hair so that I get a better idea about how this lower jaw is going to look. But then I also have an edge to work into. So one thing I'm being mindful of is that even though the hair is sort of framing this outer edge of her face, I don't want to have this uniform edge quality all the way from the top of the forehead, through the cheek, through the lower jaw, into the neck. I don't want to have all this razor sharp edge, so I want to be able to paint into the dark of the hair so that some of the face recedes into that edge. Is I get to the lower jaw here I do want to indicate the cheekbone because I do see a very distinct overlap. So she does have kind of a prominent cheekbones shape, which I think it kind of adds a nice character. Portraits. I do want to make sure I get that in place. But the values through here I still need to be careful of, um, and then as that sort of breaks into the chin, I also have to think of what kind of value and what kind of form is happening through there. Because it wouldn't be easy to overemphasize some of these shapes because there's a lot going on in a very small area. So but I when I squint down, I see a lot of kind of being more in the middle range, especially in relationship to what's happening in the forehead and then the upper cheek. So I just want to indicate what these values are headed and make sure that I'm trying to build the form still, but keeping them in a relative value range so that none of them jump out too much. Hi. So as I'm getting down to the chin through here, it's kind of a middle value range overall, but I need to have just enough transitions to show that it's rounding from where the lower lip is ending at that shadow, but then it's also rolling downward as it reaches the form shadow in to the bottom part of the jaw. I need to be able to describe that with a limited number of values. And there is maybe like a little tiny bit of a highlight on a portion of the chin, but it's going to be very subtle, especially in relationship to some of the other highlights that are occurring in the portrait. So I'm just trying to put a little value range through this area so that I can fill in the chin as it kind of ties in with the rest of the mouth. And that'll allow me to see how everything looks on the portraits so far now that the majority of it is filled in. I'm going to start adding a little information in the hair and I'm mostly just going to cover it so that I can see a dark value and how it contrasts against the brighter values in the skin. Now there is some variation in her hair, even though she has kind of a lighter, sort of sandy blonde color hair because we're working in monochrome. The relative value of that hair type is actually still somewhat dark in a lot of cases, and most of that is occurring from the light scenario that I've set up. And it's a very high contrast sort of light setup. So the majority of it is going to be this kind of darker value. So I'm really just using pure raw umber and kind of spreading it thinly so that it's not necessarily opaque, but it's still semi-transparent. Some of the darker areas, like behind the jaw and in the neck. I'm going to probably add a little bit of ivory black to get those deeper values. But I feel like the portrait right now is in a spot where I need to establish the rest of the hair as well as the background so I can then re-assess what I have in the face because now I'll have a full value range that's been established in the entire portrait. 14. Beginning the neck: So now with the majority of the portrait covered, I do want to focus a little bit on the neck area and get these things filled in so that we can see how it affects the entirety of the portrait itself. Now a lot of the shadow here again, I'm going to keep relatively transparent. So I'm not adding a whole lot of paint. Some of the sort of grayish kind of colored areas that you see on the left side of the neck and in the shadow have essentially some going into the canvas. So that's why they are appearing that way. So for now I just want to add some paint to the edge of the shadow here so that I can start working into that and flushing out the neck as well as some of the shoulder and chest area. Now, a lot of this information through here I'm going to want to keep relatively simplified. And the reason for that is is that if I put too much detail in these areas, it's going to sort of draw attention away from the portrait, and that would be the last thing that I wanted to do. So what I really want to do is just focus on the value relationships that I see in. If there's an opportunity to omit detail or anything like that, then I want to go ahead and do that. Now I do see some information kind of in the clavicle area that I want to maybe suggest and put in some lighter spots of value. But then through the chest area where we would have the sternum and kind of that expansion across the upper chest. I don't really want to get too involved in those kinds of areas because again, it's going to take away from the portrait. And when I squint at it and I glance, it's a very sort of even area. So I really want to focus on just making the values nice and transitional in just kind of simplify the information down so that I'm not overthinking it. And I'm not adding any unnecessary detail that is going to take away from the face. And so on the left side here, even though I do see there is some bits of hair that are kind of poking through the shadow. When I squint down, the overall shape is actually just one large mass. So I don't really want to worry about the hair or anything like that as I'm working, I really just want to focus on the simplicity of the shadow and the shape that it's creating through this area. Now ultimately, once I kind of get this thing blocked in, I may want to indicate some of the hair strands or anything like that just to put a little more information because I can't just have this flat shape, but nonetheless kind of blocking it in for the time being, I'm just squinting down and seeing this as a shadow mass. And then that's essentially connected to the chest. So I just want to focus on simplifying these areas down and not adding or trying to see too much information. So as they start adding paint to this area, I'm going to treat this very similar to how I did the forehead in the sense that I'm not, I just want to think about it as an expanse of value going across the entire chest. I don't want to think about the sternum, the pit of the neck as it kinda leads into the shoulder on the far right side. I don't want to really think about that. So I just want to focus on the value and making this a nice even transition across that entire front plane of the chest. Now I know that around the pit of the neck, there's some variation in value that I'm going to have to put in so that it reads like the pit of the neck kind of attaching to the rest of the shoulder and kinda clavicle and everything like that. But for the most part, I just want to have a nice even set of values across this area so that it reads simply and it's not going to detract from the face or anything like that. 15. Adding the background: Continuing through this area, I just want to again focus on getting nice even transitions. And there's a little bit more as we kinda get to the right side of the chest, we do have a little bit more light and so once I kind of get this area filled in, I will probably explore having a few little accents of light in there, but it's all relative. So even though they're going to look a little bit brighter, it's not going to be anywhere near what I have in the forehead and the cheek. So I'm still thinking about the overall hierarchy of values that I have to work with. And none of the values through the chest here can be anywhere near as bright as what I see at the top of the head. Because then that would sort of throw off the illusion that I'm trying to create in the overall sense of the picture. So still just looking for even transitional values. And then once I have established that I can put in a few little spots of brighter touches around the pit of the neck and maybe a little bit in the chest. But otherwise, for the most part, this should feel nice and just like a very smooth gradient across from left to right. And that's really what I'm trying to go for in this instance. With the chest filled in, I want to focus on adding the background at this time. And hopefully what it's gonna do is it's going to allow me to reassess the entirety of the portrait. Now, thus far, I've tried to sort of do the best that I can in terms of being accurate with my values and trying to describe the form the way I see it, but adding the background is going to give what I've established so far and entirely different context. So I'm just going to scrub in a little bit of raw umber here and I'm not being very opaque with the pigment at all. This is still fairly kind of transparent. I'm not diluting it with any sort of solvent or medium or anything like that. This is just pure paint that I'm spreading thinly with a bristle brush so that I can get good coverage across the entire surface. Now, there's not really a particular reason I've kind of saving the background for last you very well could, if you wanted at the beginning of your portrait, establish the background from the very beginning. And in some cases, you could even argue that it might be a better method in terms of the approach, just so that you can build up the picture from the background. And then moving forward. I've done it both ways in the past and I don't really have a preference for the most part, the only thing I do have to keep in mind is that as I start adding more paint to the background, I have to be very sort of conscious of the edges of the hair and how they integrate into the rest of the background. So as I start going and making a second pass through the entire painting, I'm going to start most likely with like the hair and the background so that I can join them together so that the portrait then is a little more cohesive with the space around the head itself. So this just kinda gives you an idea that once we add the background, it does kind of affect everything else that we've established. So going forward, this is just the first pass in the painting. So now that when I begin my second pass, I'm going to be thinking more about the background and how that integrates with the rest of the picture. 16. Beginning the second pass: So as they start the second pass of the painting, I'm going to begin with the background. Now I'm adding a little bit of ivory black as well as raw umber. And I'm just putting it down rather thinly. So this isn't really opaque paint that I'm putting in because I don't want to just start putting thick layers of paint in the background. I still want the overall background to be somewhat thin and I might even leave some areas semi-transparent so that you see a little bit of the raw umber in the back poking through. Now the main reason I'm going to start with the background this time is that as I begin my second pass, I am going to start with the hair so that I can blend the hair into the background, especially in the deeper parts that are mostly in Shadow. Want to just get enough background so that I can start painting into the head and all eventually cover the entire thing obviously. But for now in the time being, I just want to have enough so that I can work the background in with the rest of the portrait. Now as I begin working my way towards the head, I'm going to start with the hair and I really just want to focus on the edges where the background is meeting with the hair. Now in this particular side of the face, because it's in shadow, for the most part, the hair itself is going to be a rather flattened mass. There are some deeper shadows that I do see, like behind the jawbone in the ear here. But for the most part, the values are fairly consistent through this section of the hair. And it's really just going to be a darker value that is more or less part of the shadow. So I want to treat it as a very large mass and I don't want to look for too many difference in value or anything like that. I just want to think this is a large shape. And I want to just get the values accurately. And I would say for the most part, when you're painting hair, you never really want to paint strands or look for extra detail or anything like that for the most part, I think of hair as being big blocks of values. And I'm looking and squinting down, looking for masses that I can paint. And then Towards the end, once I feel like the hairs well established, then I can put in a few little spots of detail just to show how light is reacting to the strands of hair or anything like that. Now, depending on your portrait in your model and you know what kind of pair type they may have. The only thing I'll mention again is try and just simplify the hair into large masses. And once it's well established, then you can add a few details depending on your preference. But when you start to try and paint too many individual strands, or as you see hair overlap in kind of creates this sort of streaky effect. It, it has a tendency to break up really quickly. And so what ends up happening is you start putting in too much detail. And the hair almost kind of takes a life of its own and becomes a focal point because you're adding all this detail in this area that really is meant to support the head. The way I see hair is especially on a female if they have longer hair or you mean a male as well? If they have a longer hair type, I always treat the hair as something that is framing the face. So I never want to take away from the portrait itself by adding too much detail in the hair. I want to just simplify it down and think about how the hair interacts with the overall look of the face. And just let it sit in the background and not draw too much attention to itself. With enough information on this side of the face, I'm going to start working back into my shadows and pretty much the way I started from the very beginning as I want and just reaffirm the terminator edge where the light is meeting the shadow and sort of just build out from there. Now I'm not necessarily going to go too much darker in the shadow itself because there is some reflected light. So I do want to try and capture that. But I want to start with that Terminator edge and just gradually build down to the rest of the shadow. And I'm mostly using some semi-transparent paint here, so it's, none of it is very opaque. I'm not painting thickly at all. It's all kind of relatively thin paint, but I'm just building on what I've already established in that first pass. And now I'm just going to start blending it to the other information into the hair, into the dark shadow that's behind the jaw and just wanted to integrate them so that they now become a little bit more cohesive with one another. The idea here is with the second pass is that we're really just embellishing over the first pass that we establish. So there are certain areas where I may not even have to paint over again, but I want to just look and reassess everything. And if there's any sort of finesse that I can add to the portrait. This is what I'll be doing in the majority of the second pass in sort of adding little touches and extra details and just making sure that everything looks as best as I can make it. And if there's any inaccuracies, I can correct them in the second pass. 17. Continuing the second pass: Now as I continue along the shadow side here, again, what I'm going to really try and focus on is that Terminator edge. And just kind of making sure that as I'm rolling out of that Terminator, I really want the transitions through there to be really nice. And even because again, the biggest turn in form that I'm really going to see is going to happen along this edge. So it's an area I really want to focus on. And then as it starts bridging out closer to the light, the gradations are going to be a bit more even, but from the contrast of the shadow side as it's rolling into the light. A lot of that turn of form is taking place across that edge. And so along this terminator edge, what I'm trying to do is just look for that careful gradation in value. And it's just, it's very incremental. So as I'm as I'm mixing paint and adding to this area, I'm just making small adjustments to my mixtures and I'm not really looking for large changes. It's all very subtle. And I would just want to think about how light is sort of just rolling around this cheek from the shadow and it's gradually going to build up to ultimately a brighter value. The benefit of having that first pass though, is it does give me a little bit of a guide. So I know what kind of value range I need to be in. And what I'm really looking to do is just if there's any rough transitions in that first pass, I can essentially smooth them over in the second pass just by adding a little bit more paint. Now again, this isn't something I need to do and maybe every single area, but if necessary I can and we'll do that. It's really just about fine tuning and making sure that if this is going to be sort of my last pass in the painting, I want to try and address anything that may stick out or just may not feel right in the painting or could potentially be made better if by adding a little bit more paint to the surface. I will say that in the second pass is really kind of up to you and what your overall goal or your aim for your portrait is. So you may not necessarily want this really refined sort of look. You may want something a little looser, maybe a little bit more. Brushstrokes and kind of a looser nature and the application of paint. And that's totally fine. I'm sort of treating this as a sort of semi finished piece where I want to get some degree of refinement. So I'm going to be taking a little bit more time through the areas and making sure that things have a nice sort of round quality and kind of a finished look to them overall. The second pass also allows me to really address areas that I feel that maybe in the first pass I didn't get quite right. And so for example, here in this eye, some of the shapes are perhaps a little bit overstated and the values or might be, might be a little too much contrast through these shapes. And so like the lower lid through this area just felt a little harsh. So I'm just basically going to paint over it. Then you use the drawing that I've established as a guide. And I'm just going to manipulate the values through this area so that I still get the integrity of the shape. But I don't want it to appear as sort of cut out as I did initially when I first painted it. And so a lot of the times when I'm going through these areas, I don't have a whole lot of paint on my brush because the benefit of having that first pass is that if I, if I need to, I can use some of that paint and almost transparently paint over it so that I'm still getting a little bit of influence of that first layer that I have established. And I just need to add and finesse a little bit more paint on top of the surface so that I can get exactly what I'm looking for. Again, in this particular i, some of the shapes, perhaps a little too harsh in that first pass, so I can just soften them by adding a little bit more paint to the service. And then I can go in and start aiming for those final values that are really going to make this I pop. Now as I'm kind of finessing this I here, I'm still being very mindful that the majority of this I is in shadow because of the orientation of the light as well as the eye socket itself. So I don't want to inject too much information in here, but I do want to make some suggestion that there are little glimpses of light passages that are coming through this area. Now I think it'll really help is kinda just darkening the overall iris and kind of that region that the eyelashes occupied because they help sort of tie the eye together and give it a sort of strong graphic look that I think is helpful in this particular instance. Now once I kind of add some of that darker value in there, I will have to knock it back. And I think by adding some of the whites of the eye with a little bit more value will help it not appear as cut out and kind of sit back in that socket shape. Which is going to need to do because this eye is so heavily in shadow. 18. Finishing the eye: Now as I start to work in these small areas, I will go ahead and actually take out some smaller brushes just so that I don't mess up some of the paint I've already established in here because I'm working in such a small area. Now for this particular eye, It's not gonna be as important as the other eye that is out in the light. But I still want to be able to add some detail so that, you know, the eyes always have to work as a pair, especially in a portrait. So, but again, we always want to have a dominant eye. And then one that kind of sort of takes a backseat to the other. And so given that this I is so far in shadow, I'm not going to put as much importance in this particular eye as I will in the other. So I want to just make sure that the shapes look good. The values overall, how the eye sits in the socket, fit very well for the area that it's occupying. And then realistically after that, I'm still good. It's still needs some detail in regards to like the tear duct, the sort of iris color which is going to be very faint on her given that we're painting in monochrome. And then the AI will need a highlight to eventually. But all of these details I kinda wanna just work up to. And what I like to do as I'm building the AI is I want to build the form as best I can without putting an excessive amount of detail in. So I want to try and make sure that the forms and the volumes are reading as good as I can make them without putting in any highlights or any sort of finishing touches. And so the reason I like to do that is if I can make it look convincing with the overall shape and mass and volume feeling very solid. Then by the time I add details on it, it should really just kind of add that extra little touch to give it a nice appearance. So I spend more time focusing on the volume and the shapes and making sure that all of that is as accurate as I can make it and just get it so that it feels right. And then I'll start adding details on top of that. So as I add a little bit of a highlight there. One thing you want to keep in mind when you put in a highlight in and I is that you don't want it overly large. You want it to be really small and so that it's more impactful, the larger you make a highlight, the less it's sort of appears to be a highlight and it starts to just become too loud and sort of two dominant. So the more we can just kind of treat it in a very sort of subdued way, the more impact it's going to have overall. And so I feel relatively good about what we've established in the eye for this particular part of the portrait. So I'm going to move on to another area now. If there's anything else I need to address as I fill in the rest of the portrait, then I'll go ahead and do it at the very end. But for the most part, I kinda feel good about how that's sitting in the portrait. So I want to just start focusing on other areas so that I can see how they affect one another and just bring up the rest of the portrait. Just kinda softening some of the edges around the brow so that it feels a little bit more adhered to the rest of the forehead and kind of get that area to just blend a little bit better. As we kinda start working through here, I'm going to start focusing on the nose area and the surrounding features. So like the mouth and some of the especially the cast shadow that's coming off the nose as it transitions into the corner of the mouth. On the left-hand side is a really important area because a lot of the value start grouping together into this sort of middle range. That is a little tricky because I can see a distinct finishing edge in the cast shadow, but there's a little sort of bleed off from that shadow shape that kind of covers the entire corner of the mouth on the left-hand side. So I'm still just squinting down and trying to simplify that area so that I'm not injecting too much information or detail and the shadow area, but I really just want to make sure that I can get the overall edges in values to kind of match up to the mouth and start connecting these forms together. 19. Finishing the nose: So as I begin reworking the nose, but I really want to focus in on are the light planes where a lot of the edges between the front plane as well as the light facing side plane. When I squint down, they seemingly blend together pretty well, but I know that I'm going to need a distinct separation between the two. So it's really more a matter of making slight adjustments in value. And those two planes so that the nose still reads, having separate planes on each side, but they remain light enough so that it appears to be lit from the light source. Now there's a lot of smaller shapes within her nose type. And I see kind of how the cartilage separates from the ball of the tip of the nose into the wing of the nostril and then in the side plane. But it's all very subtle indiscreet, so I don't want to overstate that. So I'm going to be really careful with the values that I put in these areas so that it'll show some distinct separation, but it won't feel very harsh or abrupt because that would kind of age by carving out too much information in the nose. Again, working in the light side of the nose. Some of these plains almost blur together when I squint my eyes. So I want to try and achieve that uniformity across the values in this area, but I'll need just a subtle separation to show where the top plane of the nose is ending and it transitions into the side plane. Now, because these are both light facing planes. And that value separation is going to be very subtle. So I want to just kind of indicate that with a very small step in value as I'm working in these areas. And I would say the majority of the nose in this particular instance on the light side, the values are all going to be very close together. So I'm just kind of adding little pieces of paint as I go along. And so I just want to connect the top plane of the nose into the keystone shape in-between the eyes here. And that will kind of help bridge the gap between the forehead and the whole eye region together. Now it would be very tempting to show a distinct sort of stair-stepping effect from the brow ridge down into the front plane of the nose. But the transitions there are all fairly subtle so and because of how things are light facing in the forehead as well as the nose. Those values are really not too far apart from each other, but I want to have at least some separation so that we do get that distinct sort of stair-step effect from the brow ridge into the nose. Now there is some information in the bottom plane of the nose in terms of reflected light as well as the indication of the nostrils? For the most part because these are so far deep into shadow. I don't want to punch them out with too dark of a value. And the reflected light needs to be in there. But I want to be very delicate with how I do it. If I make reflected light too bright, it breaks the overall shadow effect. So I really just want it to be a tiny little sliver to indicate that there is some bounce light that's happening from that shadow, but not a whole lot to where it makes the nose feel illuminated as if there were a secondary light source. Working through these areas. I'm adjusting the value slightly just to make sure that the side plane that's facing the shadow side isn't overly dark. Now I do see it as kind of a sort of middle value shape, but I have to be very careful because if it's too dark, then it's going to sort of cut out the nose a little bit too much. Now as I'm building up the highlight, I want to be very careful that I don't overstate the front plane. There is a highlight on the ball of the nose as well as the bridge is, it's going up towards the forehead, but it's not as bright as I want to make those values, or as bright as I want to make highlights appear to be. I have to be careful that I'm not just slapping down a huge chunk of paints so that it just completely dominates the nose. I still need to think about the forms as the front plane transitions into the side plane, those highlights are going to sit exactly on the edge where those two transitions, because it's going to show that turning effect from one plane to the next. So as I've kinda started making these adjustments, you can see how the front plane and the side plane kind of blend together almost on a quick glance, a plosive, it's really easy to see the value separation of the two, but from a distance it almost doesn't appear like I made a distinction between the front and the side plane of the nose. And I think even just looking at the reference, that's kinda how I view the reference from a distance, is that the edges through that area seemingly blend together from a distance and it's only up close that we see a distinct separation in the individual planes. So I want my painting to have that same feeling. So when a viewers looking at it, edit distance, those areas should kinda feel somewhat seamless. And as light passes through the portrait, certain planes are going to almost appear like they just blend together. And that's what's going to create that large effect when you look at something from a distance and it just has an impact is because we have a strong shadow shape and a strong light shape in that contrast allows the portrait to read very well from a distance. So that's what I'm hoping I'm trying to capture as I'm working here. 20. Finishing the forehead and cheek: Now with the nose completed, I want to go ahead and just work upwards towards the forehead and just start to reassess the areas where if there's any sort of values that feel sort of jumpy or that they don't transition very well through the expanse of the forehead. I want to go ahead and make those adjustments so that we have this nice, seamless transition from one side to the other of the forehead so that it feels like a complete solidified mass through that area. So a lot of what I'm doing is just taking little bits of paint in. I can use the initial pass that I've established as a little bit of a guide. And then I can simply just add more paint to the surface and make sure that again, all the transitions feel very smooth and consistent across the entire forehead. Again, these aren't really big things are big changes that I'm making to what I've already established. I'm just trying to even everything out and the only area where I'll probably end up adding more paint is I do want to bring more in the sense of the highlight in the forehead because that is sort of the peak highlight in the entirety of the portraits. So I do want to emphasize some of that area. And what I'll end up doing is adding a little bit more opaque paints so that we get a nice, Just a little bit of impasto or a thicker paint on the surface to kind of help break, break that area up and get a nice luminous effect. Now what does need to happen for that to finish in take place is I do need to establish more in the hair as well as the background as I'm bringing that up. But I'm gonna go ahead and just increase the values in terms of brightness through the area. And that's going to come down into the cheek as well as I start to finish that area. Now the one thing I will have to address as I begin to finish off the forehead as well as add the hair is the edges where the forehead is coming connected with the hair needs to be fairly soft. Now there's a little bit of a hard edge towards the upper right-hand side of the forehead, which I can leave in there but everywhere else kind of has a little bit of a softness to it that I need to try and capture. And as I add the hair, that's something I'll have to address. Now making my way down the cheek, it is going to be fairly luminous through this area, but I do need to be mindful that it doesn't get as bright as what I'm seeing in the forehead. It's still going to be in a much brighter range then a lot of other places in the painting. But I need to sort of keep in mind that the forehead is self, is the most light facing and it is receiving the most light in the portrait. So even the cheek as bright as it is, it cannot be as bright as the forehead overall. So I'm just trying to ease some of the transitions through here and keeping in mind that because she has the prominent cheekbones, there is going to be a transition in value as the cheekbone tucks under and then the lower jaw sort of wraps around behind that. Now one thing I am noticing is that obviously as I'm increasing the value in the cheek and making it brighter, it does make the eye, especially the lower lids stand out quite a bit. So that is something I'm going to have to revisit and really make some adjustments in the values through there. But I want to go ahead and at least get the cheek up to a higher degree of finish. And then once I get to the eye, I can start making those adjustments and blend it in with the rest of this side of the face. And as I start to put in this cheekbone here, I do want to be mindful that the value does not get too dark. It's very tempting because I do see it being very prominent in her sort of character type. But given the situation in terms of the light and how it's hitting this cheekbone. It can't be a super dark value overall because if I were to increase that value too much, It's almost going to cut her cheek out and almost look like a scar or anything like that. And it needs to just look like the bone that's sort of wrapping around and kind of going towards the corner of the mouth. And then we have the lower jaw just reaching around from behind and attaching itself. And so the values through here need to be relatively subtle so that it looks so that it looks feminine and kinda has that youthful high cheekbone appearance and it doesn't look like, you know, gone to or kind of aging her or anything like that. So with that in place, I want to start adding just a little bit to the hair so that we can really start to frame the rest of the face. It's very hard to judge because the values in the hair are going to be significantly darker than anything else on this side of the portrait. So I really need to get some of that information in there. And then if I need to make any adjustments from what I just painted, I can go ahead and do those right now the paint is still wet. So I'm just adding a little bit more to the background so that I can blend the hair into it as I paint it. And again, just using a little bit of ivory black and raw umber and spreading it around fairly thinly. Not going to go to opaque with the background at all. I just want to have the darker values so that I can really see what I'm working with on the light side of the face and see if I need to make any adjustments. But you can see now the way it is, is the contrast is really starting to bring the portrait out of the canvas a little bit more. And so as we start adding the rest of the background everywhere else and we start to finish off the hair. Hopefully we'll be making some good progress in the portrait as we start putting in these darker values. 21. Finishing the second eye: With more of the background. And I do want to just sort of finish off the hair to some extent so that I can see how it relates to the forehead and everything else I have thus far. Now, to be honest with some of the light shapes in the hair, I'm just squinting down and trying to simplify a lot of the values that I see. So I still want to treat the hair even though this section here is light facing. I'm still squinting down and looking for simple shapes so that I can think of the hair as individual masses in light and dark. Now some of the highlights that are here, I will want to put in to a degree, but I don't want to overstate them and make them really bright because in context to the forehead and let's say even the nose, the highlights in the hair are going to be very subtle. For the most part. I will want to include them to some degree, but they need to sort of take a back seat to some of the other highlights in the portrait because the light is hitting a really dark surface. So even though we're getting some highlight in them, it just really can't be that bright. So I'm going to be very conservative with some of the highlights in the hair. And if anything, I would probably play them down and simplify them even more if possible. I'm just trying to think of some of the lighter masses that I see in. Again, I don't want to get caught up in the idea of individual strands or anything like that. I'm just putting in smaller pieces of paint and making sure that the value transitions look appropriate for what I'm seeing. And then towards the end, all my might just kind of indicate a few of the highlights, the reflectivity of the hair. But again, because it's so close to the forehead, which is going to be our highest light. I'm going to be very conservative with how bright I choose to go in some of the hair highlights. Now because I have the forehead and the cheek well established at this point, I do want to revisit this I and really address some of the things I feel I missed in the first past. And what I would say that is going to be for me really toning down the sort of lower lid as well as the anatomy under the eye itself where I feel like I overstated some of the shapes and perhaps went a little too dark initially. So I want to just try and calm those down and pick out some of the middle tones that are just above the top eyelid and just emphasize them so that they frame the ball of the eye so that it feels like it's in the socket a little bit better. Now the tricky part with this particular eye is the fact that I don't have any shadow shapes to really lock onto. And so the middle values in that are surrounding the eye become very important because it allows me to make the shape kind of a little bit larger and it feels like it's part of a group. And the tricky part is when you have an eye that's out in the light like this is that it can feel like it's almost floating and almost like it's an island. And I really want to make sure that it feels like it's a part of the head and that everything belongs where it should be. And so for me, what that means is manipulating the middle tone values around the eye so that the eye just feels like it's locked into place and it doesn't feel like it's just this dark iris that's kinda floating in a sea of light, if you will. So that's something I'm just trying to be very conscious on this. I'm putting down paint and making these adjustments. Now I do know that the iris itself does have to be dark, but the overall values in the white of the eye are still relatively in a darker middle value because they're really not receiving that much light. So that's going to help me just kinda bridge the gap between some of these areas because all of these middle tones are going to sort of help the I blend into the rest of the face that I have established at this point. Let's just kinda adding some extra details to the top part of the lid. And a lot of information through a here starts to really blend fairly well in terms of the values. Because overall, everything in this area as it gets to the corner of the tear duct, kind of the values are getting really close together. So I want to just try and capture that as best I can and not sort of cut out any one individual piece of the eye. It really does help to think of the eye is not just an individual piece of anatomy, so not just the ball of the eye lid, but everything that sort of fits in with the eye sockets. So if I think in context of the brow, the brow ridge, the eyeball, the top and lower lid, the bag under the eye. All of that is part of this greater piece that I'm trying to develop. And so I want to think of how all of those things relate to one another. So that again, the end goal is to make the, I feel like it's a part of the face and it's not just this cutout shape that I've carved out of the front plane of the face. So I'm just trying to make sure that everything adheres well to one another so that there is a good general uniformity across the entire face. 22. Finishing the mouth: As I'm starting to wrap up this, I here, I just want to slowly start working my way down towards the mouth. But I feel like what we've established so far with this I is that it's in a much better place than when it was after my first pass. And I feel like there's a little bit more cohesion with the rest of the face as it comes into the cheek and with the nose as well. So now that we've kind of gone our bearings with this area, I feel like I just want to go back down, work my way through the cheek again and then tie that in with the mouth so that while the paint is still wet, I can group all of these areas together so I can get them fitting properly. I feel like what happened in a lot of these areas in my first pass is that perhaps some of the values were a little too jumpy. So in this second pass, I'm able to kind of address them as I go in kind of fine tune some areas I can start really honing in on the subtleties that I'm seeing in the rest of the face. And as I start working down towards the mouth and then through the chin area, I'll have a much better idea about where I need to take those other features. Now that I've resolved a lot of the information in the rest of the face. Hopefully as I'm working along here, you can tell from the initial first pass up until now we've kind of just taken all the little areas we've worked on and just really refined them to a higher degree of finish. Now again, this is going to be different for everyone and kind of what your ultimate goal is with your own portrait. But you want to start thinking in these sorts of stages. As you bring up your painting from the first-pass into a second pass into whatever degree of finish you're chasing. You want to just start thinking of how you bring up your painting in different layers and kinda working towards the end goal. As I start getting closer to the mouth here, again, this is an area where I think it's a little tricky in the sense that there's an illusion of these really bright values that are taking place. And it's not that there aren't some lighter values that'll have to hit, but it's nowhere near as bright as some of the other areas in the portrait. So I'm going to be very cautious about how I put in some of these smaller value pieces. Again, I think one of the areas that is also a little tricky is the laugh line in the cheek, as it kinda ties in to the muscle shape of the mouth. It is an area where again, I don't want to overstate that last line because it's going to add dramatically to her age. So I just want to be very cautious of that. I still want to indicate it with a subtle value shift, but not so much so that it kind of cuts, cuts after the nose and into the cheek so that it's very prominent. So I'm just trying to be mindful of that as I start working around the mouth. Most of the areas in the mouth, in fact, are all going to be relatively sort of middle value except for this light facing plane through here. But it's still not going to be overly bright, even though it's very tempting. There's a couple of areas where it looks like there are some highlights, but I want to be very careful to not punch those out because there's a lot of simultaneous contrast from the cast shadow in the nose that is creating the illusion that some of these areas in the mouth are much brighter than what they actually appear to be. So any little highlights in these areas that I kind of see in the reference. I'm going to play down considerably because it would kind of break the overall lightened dark effect if I were to have highlights in these areas. Now the upper lip itself is fairly uniform across the board and there's just a handful of areas where it starts to lighten a little bit. And what I'm more concerned with when I'm painting the mouth is really just to make sure that the overall edges around the mouth where it comes into contact and forms into the overall muscle shape are on the softer side and it's very tempting. I find a lot of students that I've had in the past where they tend to sort of cut out and paste on the lips so that all of the edges are very hard. And it kind of just feels off because it doesn't feel like it's adhering to the rest of the face. So a lot of the edges around the mouth, we wanna make sure that they kinda have this overall softness and sort of a fleshy type feel to it so that it really feels like it's a part of that muscle shape and that it's not an afterthought that we kind of just stamped on are cut out. And it looks too harsh if we don't soften the edges. And a lot of these areas. Now that doesn't necessarily mean that hard edges won't exist. But what I would say is as you're painting the mouth, keep it to a select few hard edges so that you can really make them count. So it might be in the area where the corners of the mouth, where they're kind of coming to the node of the mouth at the end or just a little bit towards the center where the top and the lower lip meet. You kinda wanna just be very selective about the hard edges that you do use and then soften back a lot of the other areas so that they really start to feel like they're a part of the overall muscle shape in the mouth. And the lips are just sort of molding onto it and not sort of feeling punched out or sort of pasted on. 23. Finishing the chin: Now as I start getting to the bottom of the portrait, I really just want to make sure that I'm attaching the chin to the form shadow as it kind of joins together into the cast shadow onto the neck. And so I really just want to make these areas feel like they're adhering to one another since they're all kind of meeting in a very similar place. And once we get the chin filled in, then I can really start focusing a little bit more on the cast shadow on the neck and start tying that into the rest of the hair as well as the background. Now most of the edges through here are going to be fairly consistent until they get to the chin. But there's just some subtlety going on because as we get to the ball of the chin, the edges are going to get a little softer on her. And then as we connect this area, I just want to make sure that at least I'm getting a nice separation on in the values from the neck and the jaw line that are coming into contact here. Now a lot of this stuff is going to be relatively minor. So I'm not really having to do a whole lot, but I want to just make sure that even though these areas aren't a focal point, that I addressed them properly and make sure that they feel like they're at hearing with the rest of the portrait I've done so far. A lot of the overall values through here are fairly kinda close together, so, but I'm just looking for a few small variations and I want to just make sure that I'm not overdoing the highlight that I see here on the chin and most of this kind of information down here because it's so far from the light source, I have to be mindful about how much I'm playing up or how much information I'm actually putting in. Because realistically this isn't a spot in the portrait where I want to have too much attention. It wants to kinda be fairly subdued so it doesn't detract from the other features. Now this particular area and the neck is receiving a bit more light in. I've kinda overstated the shape and the pit of the neck. So I'm going to have to kind of address that in just kinda tone down the value a bit because right now it's a little too it's just a little too drastic and I think for her, and so I'm gonna just kinda cover that with a little bit of a brighter value. And then I'm still going to have to revisit the rest of the kind of pit of the neck and the chest area. But for the most part, I want to just get the rest of the shadow, the painting just so that we can see how this all ties together. And that'll just allow me to really address what kind of value changes I may need to make as I kinda get closer towards the finish here. And now again with the hair on this particular side of the portrait because so much of it is covered in shadow. I don't want to overemphasize any detail or put in any unnecessary information. When I squint down, the majority of what I'm seeing here all just kinda blends together. And so I really don't want to sort of add information into a very dark area. I think it's just going to detract from the rest of the portrait. And I really just want to make it look like one large cohesive shape if I can help it. So just want to finish up the rest of the background with more ivory black and raw umber. And really what I want to see is I just want to see the contrast against the rest of the shoulder and chest area so that I can kind of assess how much more I need to work on this area. And I know I'm going to have to get a little bit brighter in the neck in certain portions of the chest, but it is again, one of those areas where I don't want to overdo it and I just want a nice sort of simplistic resolution for this area so that it's kind of taking a back seat to the, to the rest of the portrait. As we're getting closer to finishing this up, a lot of the changes that this point are going to be fairly subtle. It's just going to be either adding little bits of value or adjusting edges. And just looking for small areas where if I can improve them, to some extent, I want to go ahead and try to do that. But I think for this particular portrait, it's just gonna be a lot of adjusting values and looking for better transitions in some of the gradations through this area. And then kinda focusing on the edges of where these areas meet and just trying to capture what I'm seeing here in the reference. I'll still have to add a bit of detail and certain areas and I will address the hair as well because that does sort of become important, especially on the light side. But again, it's all going to just be kind of small little details in minor adjustments from this point onward. 24. Finishing the hair: As I'm completing the neck and this lower part of the painting, I do want to put in some information for the hair, but I'm going to be very sort of subtle about it, especially with this little passage of hair that's in shadow. It's okay to maybe emphasize a few little spots of detail just so that it's not left is like a flat shape. So I do want to inject some information there, but the value range in this area is going to be so subdued that it's not something that's going to stand out from from being shadow per se, but I do want to indicate maybe just a few strands so that it's not just left empty or unintended. For this passage of hair that's in the light. I can add a little bit more information to it and kind of suggest some strands. But for the most part, I don't want to copy what I'm seeing because she kinda has a thinner hair type and I do see lots of separate individual strands. And they're small little cache shadows that are happening across the chest and the clavicle. And I don't really want to copy that because I feel like it's going to muddy up the area in a little bit too busy and take away from the rest of the portrait. And I'm just going to add in the rest of the background to a darker value so that everything is brought up to a similar level. And what I need to do is to sort of revisit the top part of the hair because I didn't really quite adress it enough initially. So I want to go back in and I'm going to work the background so that I can focus on some of the edges in that hair so they can start blending in together. So just kind of oiling out some of these areas that have sunken and because as I kind of get back to the hair, I just want to be able to reassess some of the values that I'm working with and having that oil there's just going to allow me to easily repaint back into this. Now, as I'm working on the hair up here, I really just want to make sure that again, I'm simplifying a lot of this down and I'm not getting overly bright with some of the highlights that I'm seeing. The other important area for me is going to be addressing some of the hair that's coming into contact with the forehead and just making sure that the edges around there feel a little bit on the softer side. And the reason for that is, is that I don't want the hair to feel like it's sort of paste it on as it's coming into contact with the rest of the face. I want it to feel very natural so that the hair, as it's meeting with the forehead through here, it just needs to be sort of very soft and diffused overall. And I would say in general, for the most part, whether it's male or female, having the hair edges be kind of software in this area as it's coming into contact, is going to just be a good call overall so that it just feels like they're connected to one another. And if you start to use hard edges around this area, it just feels unnatural and almost like it's a, uh, to pay or a wig of some kind because the break between the two forms just feels very unnatural. So I just want to be very mindful about some of the edges, especially as we're getting into contact with a light source through that area as well. And they just want to be on the software side in general. So I run and be real careful as I'm putting in this information through here. So as I've kind of made some adjustments to the hair in this area, I want to just go back on top of the forehead and just make a few minor changes here. And it's really just kinda brightening up the area now that I kind of have the hair there as a sort of context, I can start to brighten up some of the forehead through this area as well. At this point we are getting to the final passes in the painting. So I'm just going to just try and be really selective about some of the changes that I'm making in. It's going to be very minor at this point. And I might just add a few little touches to brighten some areas. If I need to make any changes in edges or anything like that, I want to just address them now as we're getting to the final steps in the painting. 25. The final touches: In these last stages of the paintings on going to be doing at this point is just looking over individual areas and asking myself, what can I do to either make adjustments or make these areas read better? A lot of that is in this case, I feel making things a little bit brighter, making some of my transitions in certain areas a little bit smoother. And just really being conscious of some of the edges that I'm having in these bright areas as they're coming and transitioning from one form to the next. Everything at this stage in the painting should be relatively minor overall. So we don't want to be making large changes at this point. It's just going to be either subtle variations in some of the values that I'm seeing. Brightening some areas up so that maybe the transitions from one form to the next are a little bit easier or smoother. And really just kind of, you know, I'm, I'm not really adjusting shapes or anything like that at this point. For the most part, it's really just kind of adding little bits of paint here and there. And I think in some areas just maybe brightening them up a little bit, especially on the light side of the face. Ultimately, depending on the kind of finish that you were going for when you begin, the portrait will dictate sort of how much time you spend in these last stages, refining and adjusting and, and things like that. Now, if you were approaching the portrait as an Alla prima type single sitting exercise, then you're finished is going to be a bit more abbreviated. It's not going to be as models or sort of finally adjusted, if you will. And that's totally okay. So there's really no right or wrong way to approach this type of exercise in terms of working in monochrome. It can be whatever you want it to be. From this particular portrait study that I'm doing here. You know, it is a little bit more developed and I did spend several sittings working on it, but it's still not I would what I would call It's not like a super highly modeled portrait or anything like that. It's kind of maybe somewhere in between. So again, kind of it's personal preference and how you decide to approach this and also to your experience level in terms of modeling and finishing something. But if you've gone through the process that I've described here, once we reach this stage, it's really kind of up to you whether you decide to go with the portrait and how much time you want to devote to finishing it. So I just want to address this little bit of hair through here. And like I was saying earlier, I want to simplify a lot of this down and I don't want to get caught up in some of the details in the strands of the hair. I just want to be suggestive with it in kind of play it down to a large extent because putting an excessive amount of detail in this area, I feel like wood would take away from the portrait itself in the hair really shouldn't sort of take a backseat to the features. And that overall effect that we have in the face. So you can see here relative to the reference, I'm really simplifying a lot of this down and I'm ignoring a lot of the smaller cast shadows that I see from the strands of hair. And it's just, it would be very easy to get caught up in areas like that in overstayed them to the point where it just becomes almost like this overly detailed area of the painting that really wouldn't make sense to have at this point relative to how I've handled the rest of the portraits. So again, kind of a personal choice when you do these sorts of things. But in general, like I said earlier with the hair, you want to just try and simplify a lot of it down so that it reads as a larger mass and then we don't get caught up in individual hairs or strands or anything like that. As we get close to wrapping this up here, I will make a separate video with some closing thoughts about the finished portrait in kind of the process that we went through to get here. But again, depending on what kind of finish you are aiming for in your own portrait, you can spend as much time as you need to achieve that at this point. Hopefully, if you've gone through the procedure that we discussed, that you'll get to these last stages, just making little minor adjustments and just trying to finish off the portrait the best you can. And again, depending on your skill level, this will mean different things to different people, but I think more than anything, it's really just kind of going through the process of doing these kinds of exercises is really the overall benefit. And then each time you just hope you do a little bit better. As you get more comfortable with the process, you get more familiar with how the paint behaves, how the layering works, um, and so again, you can kind of spend however much time you need at this stage to get the last minute details. But overall, I think we kinda have accomplished a lot with this demonstration and hopefully you were able to get something from it. And kinda just by watching me go through the several stages that we discussed. 26. Final thoughts: So this is the final portrait as it stands. And what I've done is I've put a little retouch varnish on the surface so that you can see the portrait as it is without the sinking in the background and some of the darker areas. And I apologize for some of the reflection, but it is what it is in terms of just allowing you to see the overall effect while the painting has dried in certain areas. So at this point, like I said, this is sort of my finished portrait and what I consider done for this particular exercise. And depending on where you started in the beginning, if you were more focused on doing Alla prima portraits that are, let's say a single sitting in the two to four hour range, then you're finished is going to look a lot different and it's going to be a little bit more simplified and abbreviated in Alla prima painting in and of itself is a very different style of painting. That said, It's a very good practice and there's no reason that you couldn't do lots of monochrome studies in an Alla prima setting on a regular basis. Now, if you followed along with the procedure that I presented here, then hopefully you're finished is a little bit more polished and a little bit more developed. Now it ultimately doesn't matter how far you get with the finished. The more important aspect of doing this procedure is having a step-by-step system to follow so that you can isolate every single stage of the painting and make it the best I can so that it leads you ultimately to a much better finished result. Outside of that, I think the benefit of approaching painting this way is for those of you that are transitioning from, let's just say, drawing only into painting itself. And so what it allows you to do is to take a lot of the principles you have in drawing. So in terms of shape and value in proportion. And now all we're doing is transitioning those same skills into oil paint. The benefit also too is that by focusing just on monochrome, we can more or less simplify some of the process because we're removing the element of color, which has its own layer of complexities that at first might feel overwhelming, especially if you're new to painting. So by just focusing on value, we can just think about learning how to draw again by using brushes and paint to achieve what we've done with pencil or charcoal. Ultimately, where you decide to go with these kinds of exercises is up to you. But I would encourage you to take your time and do a good handful of these because once you get comfortable with the paint and just mixing your values, then as you transition into color, whether that's a limited palette or a full color palette, you're going to be comfortable enough, hopefully with your values that adding the layer of color to the sort of difficulty of painting hopefully won't feel as severe. But my goal for you is really just to have a process that you can follow from start to finish. And especially if you planning on doing more developed portraits or things that require more than one sitting and just having a procedure that you can sort of go step-by-step, ultimately towards a finish and then, you know, where you go from there as kind of up to you in terms of how detail or how sort of painterly you decide to get. Now, style wise is something I'm style and things like that are things that I'm not going to really discuss because it's such a personal thing for every artist. And I think that's something that we all have to figure out on our own through experience and practice. But at least by having a procedure to follow, my goal is so that you never feel lost in the entire process. And because that's a sort of it's not and it's not a good feeling, not kind of knowing where to go. So as long as you have a very sequential step-by-step approach, where you decide to finish the portrait and what the end result looks like. It's kind of up to you, but the road getting there is sort of paved for you by having a step one, step two, step three that you can follow from beginning to end. I hope that by watching me go through the various stages of painting, it gives you an idea about how you can approach these kinds of studies for yourself and whether or not you have the time to do shorter studies or longer studies. It really doesn't matter. I think it's more about just getting your practice in and just getting more comfortable with painting itself and mixing value so that you can just gradually build confidence over time. A lot of this is when any component of our, I would say is really just about getting the time in and just getting the practice and then through that practice over several weeks and months. And what ends up being years is that's how you gradually get better at doing this. And so for those of you who've been on the fence about either attempting painting, whether it's oil or otherwise. Hopefully, this gives you an idea about approaching it so that it's a little bit easier and a little bit more manageable for you so that it's hopefully not as intimidating.